Mel Robbins' 5 second rule has increased in popularity over the years, ever since she first explained the rule to the crowd at a TedX talk back in 2013. Since then, the talk has gone viral and Mel Robbins has released her own book, The 5 Second Rule, to better explain the steps and benefits of using this simple rule. The book has become a bestseller in the self-help book category, and celebrates selling nearly 2 million copies, as well as being published in 33 different languages.
Mel Robbins explains the rule as,
“The 5 Second Rule is simple. If you have an instinct to act on a goal, you must physically move within 5 seconds or your brain will kill it. The moment you feel an instinct or a desire to act on a goal or a commitment, use the Rule.
When you feel yourself hesitate before doing something that you know you should do, count 5-4-3-2-1-GO and move towards action.”
What does Mel Robbins’ 5 Second Rule do?
Mel Robbins explains that she first started to use the 5 second rule as a way of getting out of bed at a time that was both difficult for her and her family. The process was simple. Counting backwards from 5-4-3-2-1 and immediately acting at the end of the count, and before the mind creates a reason not to act.
Throughout the book, Robbins explains that you, just like everyone else, have 5 seconds to act out before your mind convinces you to do otherwise. It creates a process to combat the subconscious mind, and forces us to act on our ideas.
“The 5-second rule is simple. If you have an instinct to act on a goal, you must physically move within 5 seconds or your brain will kill it. …. Hesitation is the kiss of death. You might hesitate for a just nanosecond, but that’s all it takes. That one small hesitation triggers a mental system that’s designed to stop you. And it happens in less than—you guessed it—five seconds.”
We all will feel moments throughout the day where motivation is lacking, and we put off what we know needs to and should be done. We can always tell ourselves that there is a better time for action, and that there isn’t a need to act right in that moment. The fact is that we don’t need to wait to feel motivation, and instead creating action in itself is the only motivation we need.
I’m sure we could all think of a moment when the 5 second rule could work for us. Perhaps you struggle to get out of bed in the morning, and constantly hit the snooze button on your phone. It might be that you put off speaking in a group due to social anxiety. Maybe you’ve been putting off responding to a tricky email. Whatever the reason for inaction, using Mel Robbins 5 second rule could be the way for you to stop putting things off and start taking action!
Who is Mel Robbins?
Mel Robbins is an American Lawyer turned self-help author. She is most well known for her book, The 5 Second Rule. She is also the author of The High 5 Habit.